As a part of the background rewrite, a new Pantheon has been put together. There were a number of reasons for this. The first of which was that we felt that the definition of some of the key characters made compelling story telling more difficult. The second of which was that the magic system in 3rd edition was a little chaotic. This is not a bad thing when you are just writing and telling stories, but makes putting together a balanced game system for a table-top miniatures a very deep challenge indeed.

So, the very core of the magical system in the Demonworld was revisited and then altered to take in a different direction. There will now be ten schools of magic, and these will be tied to elements of the world by tying them directly to a deity that becomes the symbol of the school of magic as well as its ultimate source of power. Worshippers of a deity then gain access to the spells within the school.

The schools of magic, and their patron deity are as follows:

  • Earth – Rakor
  • Air – Ashandra
  • Fire – Hellia
  • Water – Ferrund
  • Order – Thondis and Vael (twins)
  • Chaos – Rhagai
  • Life – Katiya
  • Death – Harkurr
  • Blood – Meridian
  • Spirit – Korprakus

Each of these gods belongs either to the order of Dei, or the order of Mondi, showing the group of gods or “DeMons” that were created by Ka when the world was formed.

Where possible, we have used names that appeared in the previous material to pay some homage to what has come before. As can be seen, however, that this structure is a large departure from the previous works.

In game terms, the intention is that there will be the ten schools of magic available to casters. Each school will have four spells defined that will be useful on the battlefield. Each of these spells will have different effects depending on the level (1 to 4) that it is cast at, with the higher level generating a correspondingly greater effect as well as costing a suitably larger amount of points to include in the army list. This isn’t a unique system by any definition. But it will allow the spells to be play-tested properly before publication as there won’t be a combination of effects that are too large to deal with.

I want to finish this blog post with an essay of the creation of the world. This essay is not in its final form and may change as the material matures towards the release of the 4th edition game. But it should give an insight into the thinking that has gone on into creating a richer, more nuanced world to underpin the civilizations present in the world. This should then allow greater depth of story telling and a living world that grows and changes as the game line develops.

The Thoughts of Ka

Under utter darkness and pressure, it awoke. It burst into brilliant flame, light, heat and life. It stretched forth in new magnificence. Filling the Eos with light and song. It looked and It saw that it was alone and the Eos was empty except for itself. After some time of gazing outwards it turned its thoughts to self. And sought some inner peace, but there was none. What am I? It wondered, Am I thing? Or am I being?. Eventually it decided on being and determined that being must have an identity. It chose to be called Ka. And Ka decided that a being must not be alone and to create a companion. Then Ka took a small piece of itself and bent all thought upon it. Moulding and shaping it formed the likeness of a ball, and Ka called it Id. But Id was mute and lifeless and did not respond to Ka’s calls. And Ka was sad, for it had failed to create the companion it desired.

And eons passed until an inspiration struck Ka. Reaching out to Id, Ka poured its essence upon its companion and Id began to swell and expand. As the essence poured in, Id grew bigger and bigger until finally it too, burst into light. And Ka rejoiced, because Id was beautiful. Ka continued to pour essence and Id grew and blossomed and flowered and was truly the most beautiful thing in the void. Soon the magnificence of Id was overwhelming as it continued to grow while Ka’s essence flowed unchecked. But as Id grew, Ka started to feel weak. As Id waxed, Ka waned and soon began to pale and thought slowed. Now hollow, dull and grieved, Ka saw Id and mourned. Because although magnificent, Id still did not speak. And Ka was now indeed weak and almost entirely spent.

Ka’s thoughts crawled through time. Slow and unsteady.

With great reluctance, Ka slowly reached out to Id, and began to take back its own essence. Duly Id began to shrink and become less. But Ka felt itself return and grow strong and lithe once more. When Ka had returned to its former self, it could now see Id was now much reduced. Still beautiful, but much smaller. Then, tentatively, Ka reached out and slowly poured essence into Id again. Carefully this time so as to not drain itself. Ka pushed out the essence and Id grew once more. Ka’s companion expanded and blossomed as before, but more slowly this time.

Ka was pleased. For it retained the fullness of its own being, and yet it could also see Id as the brightest thing there was. Id was once again magnificent in every way except one. Id still did not speak. Id shone, beautiful and full of light, but mute. And so Ka remained troubled. Then Ka reached inside once more and crafted a container from a small piece of itself. Then taking a piece of the music that filled the Eos, it captured the music in the container so that the sound sang from the container alone. Ka placed the container upon Id’s surface and waited.

The little mote of song swirled and spun lazily on the surface of Id. Then the container sank slowly into the surface until it was mostly embedded. As it sank, the mote of song grew in volume and the container started to spin more quickly. Soon the note grew shrill and harsh and strident until the container burst into fragments and scattered. Each fragment contained a sliver of the mote of the song. Each of these fragments also started to spin and more and more notes raised their clamouring voices. Very soon the song of Eos began to be overwhelmed by the wall of sound calling out from the surface of Id. Each container fragment grew in volume and energy until fractured into ever smaller pieces of song until the whole surface of Id was covered with countless spinning motes of song, all competing at once to send their voice into the Eos.

To quell the din, Ka then reached out and sealed some void into another small container of itself and placed that on the surface of Id. Upon touching a song fragment, the void container immediately consumed it and sat spinning in its place. Within mere moments the energy of the song fragments also shattered the void container into fragments and sent them spinning across the surface. Where they touched song fragments, another mote of song was made silent, and the song began to diminish in volume. After some time a balance was reached and the song neither grew nor diminished. The fragments of song no longer had enough energy to shatter the void containers and so each container, song and void, swirled around each other on the surface, spinning in waves of sound. The song pulsed and throbbed across Eos, still chaotic and strident, but no longer overwhelming.

Then Ka spent some time thinking about how it might control the sound. It still drowned out the song of Eos with which it longed for it instead to be in harmony. Over time it had five of these thoughts. And as each thought occurred Ka carefully captured the thought in a skein of essence. When it had all five thoughts arranged exactly the way it wanted them within the essence skeins, it laid them gently over the surface of Id. The effect was immediate. Each thought swirled around within its skein and over the surface of Id. The thoughts chased, guided, cajoled and ordered the fragments of song into shapes and patterns. Mightily the thoughts strove to determine order from the chaos of the song and yet whenever they finally produced some order and a beautiful tune arose, the spinning fragments of void broke up the patterns and shapes and the song once more descended into a shapeless cacophony.

And Ka despaired as it watched his thoughts get ever more desperate in their attempts to control the sound. Each time it perceived a beautiful song, it was torn away into chaos.

Another idea then took form and Ka carefully captured another five thoughts. Each of these thoughts rose as a counterpoint to the five original thoughts. Once it had these thoughts arranged in exactly the right way, it laid them onto the chaotic surface of Id. Immediately these new thoughts set about ordering the fragments of void. As each thought strove with a set of fragments a snatch of tune would appear. Chaotic swirls started to make way for ever longer pieces of pure, delightful music. But each thought strove alone and so each piece of music was only a fleeting moment. Then one of the original five thoughts started to work in conjunction with another thought, and these two thoughts were able to order the sound for longer periods of time, and the song stayed beautiful for longer. Then another thought joined the joint effort and the music grew more beautiful still. Then the three reached out to all the others and very soon all ten thoughts had formed a framework of cooperation and suddenly the music was pure and marvellous and the surface of Id burst into voice.

Ka basked in the pure sound of creation. A glorious and triumphant sound that echoed out into the Eos and wrapped around the song of Eos and drove it to new heights of splendor. And it looked down upon the thoughts it had set upon Id, and pride swelled. Calling to the five thoughts that had tamed the fragments of void it spoke.

“Behold my pride, thoughts of Ka. You have greatly pleased me, and thus I shall name you”

And using the voice of Id, the thoughts intoned together “What will you call us?”.

“I will call you ‘De’” Ka answered.

And the surface of Id rippled and a sour note rang through the music as the first five thoughts stirred unhappily. Finally, the one thought that had first initiated the cooperation amongst all the thoughts spoke up.

“And why do we, great Ka, who came first from your being, and who strove mightily in vain to tame the song, be named only second? If we are to be named at all”

And Ka perceived the pride in that thought, it saw the injury that had been perceived and was moved.

“And you have my thanks also.” Ka replied. “For the song is mighty, but it is only mighty together. For you alone were not able alone to tame the notes.”

It paused for a time, considering. Then spoke again. “For your valiant effort, I shall name you with a longer name, to reflect on your own efforts. Henceforth you five thoughts who were created first, but named second, shall be known as ‘Mon’”

And the prideful Mon glowed as it turned to the De and spoke.

“Ever shall the Mon be greater than the De” it said

Then the De were moved from their exaltation to unhappiness and a second sour note rang through the voice of Id.

And Ka spoke again. “Be happy, my thoughts, for all together have created the voice of Id. You have accomplished the greatest wish of mine, for Id to speak. And speak it does. But the work is not yet finished and now an even greater song awaits.”

Ka perceived the song to falter for a time, but as the De and the Mon moved back to their tasks, soon it rose again and covered all Eos with glorious sound.

Slowly the surface of Id began to change. The fragments of song and void sank below the surface taking the glow of light with it. Then swirls of liquid rose and pooled into lakes and seas. Mist and gas arose from the liquid shrouding the ball in a halo that glittered and sparkled in Ka’s own brilliant light.

And Ka was delighted to have such a beautiful companion.